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The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Tuesday accepted a petition seeking the prime minister's election to be declared unconstitutional on the basis that at least 69 members of the National Assembly abstained from voting and failed to participate in the formation of the federal government.

The petitioner, Sheikh Zahid Mahmood, had last week filed the petition through senior lawyer A.K. Dogar, pleading that it was mandatory under Article 91(4) of the Constitution that every member of the National Assembly must cast his/her vote to person(s) nominated for the election of prime minister.

The petitioner had stated that 69 members of the PPP and PPP and Jamaat-i-Islami (JI) were present in the assembly but abstained from voting, and that by doing so they had failed to perform their duty of participating in the establishment of the federal government.

In the petition, he had explained that the chosen representatives of the people could not abstain from casting their votes, and urged the court to declare that Imran Khan had been elected as prime minister unconstitutionally.

The LHC accepted the petition for hearing today, and directed the petitioner to make the parliamentarians who did not partake in the PM election, parties to the petition.

The court also issued notices to the PPP and JI, and ordered Deputy Attorney General Imran Aziz to discuss the matter with PM Khan and the election commission, and appear before the court in the next hearing.

The first hearing of the case will take place on November 1.